Harriers do battle with the elements

Paul Hobbs (Todmorden Harriers)
Paul Hobbs (Todmorden Harriers)

Todmorden Harriers battled strong winds and heavy rain at the White Holme Circular Fell Race on Sunday.

The weather did nothing to deter a record field of 112 entrants.

The 12-mile route featured 1,200 feet of ascent, much of it in the initial climb from the Summit Inn past Chelburn Reservoirs as the runners headed up towards the White House.

Here, they joined the Pennine Way and passed by Light Hazzles and Warland Reservoirs with a strong side wind blasting the rain across.

After leaving the Pennine Way they continued around the drains on boggier ground, with poor visibility making it difficult to see far ahead.

As they turned towards White Holme Reservoir, they had also to contend with a powerful headwind blasting the relentless rain into their faces.

Calmer conditions slowly returned as they descended back to the finish.

James Logue, of Calder Valley, seemed unaffected by the conditions as he completed the distance in 1:18:18, close to the course record and over five minutes ahead of second placed Jon Morgan of Dark Peak.

Paul Hobbs was the first of the Todmorden runners, finishing in 19th place in a time of 1:33:50.

Darren Graham finished in 1:44:43 for 51st, with Mick Craven three minutes back in 57th and Richard Butterwick a further minute behind in 62nd place.

Kath Brierley finished fouth lady, and 67th overall, in a time of 1:49:46.

Mandy Goth finished 109th, just ahead of Jane Leonard, who suffered an injury part way through but still completed the course.

That unfortunately meant that the ladies team prize was lost by a narrow margin to Calder Valley, who also won the men’s team prize.